Saturday, April 07, 2001

Brush with Greatness/Brush with Stupidity

Last Saturday night, five of us went to a taping for an HBO comedy special, thanks to a friend in the business. I was really confused about what was going on, but we showed up, milled around for a while munching on free food until they called out for "guests of the production company." Woo hoo, that was us. We must be in the front row. In fact, we were (though they later moved us back a little bit). Still wasn't sure what was going on -- there was a sign on stage saying "Welcome [Something] High Class of 1981". Huh.

Fortunately, we ran into the parents of aforementioned friend, who clued us in. This was going to be a series of sketches by a number of different comedy troupes. Most of them I hadn't heard of, although I had heard of the Groundlings. Many of the sketches were less than inspiring, but some -- such as Australia's Umbilical Brothers -- were downright entertaining. Hopefully the less entertaining ones will end up on the cutting room floor.

But then it was time for the final sketch with The Kids in the Hall. Out wanders Dave Foley and Kevin McDonald. Not to take anything away from Kevin McDonald, but I found Dave Foley 20 times funnier than anyone else in the room. He was joking around before and after the sketches in a genuinely funny manner that few people have.

After some forced laughter for the laugh track, we were on our way. We decided to head to Fado for a drink. As we rounded the corner of the building the taping was in, I heard Martin say, "It's Dave Foley and Kevin McDonald of Kids in the Hall!" Sure enough, there they were. I don't know what came over me, but I started to do my best "Teenage Girls See the Beatles" shrieking. I figured a) I would never see these guys again and b) I was far enough away to be non-threatening. Everybody was somewhat amused/vaguely embarassed.

So we wandered over to Fado, which was fairly packed with people watching the Maryland/Duke basketball game/debacle. Fortunately, there were seats available as long as we were OK with not being able to see the TV. In fact, there were two tables tucked into the corner. So we claimed one, sat down and ordered our drinks. A couple minutes later, who sits down at the table next to us than -- the Kids in the Hall. So I did see them again, and I was not nearly far enough away to avoid feeling pretty darn awkward.

You can also read another take on the evening's events that's slightly less Jon-centric.

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